Hospital spending is food for thought

New figures reveal how much is spent on hospital food.

Spending on food in East Devon’s hospitals is just under the national average, the Midweek Herald can reveal.

Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust, which is responsible for running community hospitals in Honiton, Axminster and Seaton, spends �8.46 per patient, per day, on food, compared to the national average of �8.58.

The figure not only includes the cost of raw ingredients but preparation costs, such as cooking, serving and staffing.

The data was submitted by the trust as part of the Estates Returns Information Collection being compiled by the NHS Information Centre.

A spokeswoman for the Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust told the Herald: “The NHS Trust recognises the importance of nutrition and aims to provide high quality meals to its patients.

“All hospitals run by the trust scored either Excellent or Good in the Patient Environment Action Team (PEAT) 2011 assessments for the quality of their food.

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“The trust monitors its daily spending on food and drink for patients and is above average in terms of spend per patient when compared against benchmarking data for small acute hospitals outside of London.”

The Trust said it does not have cost-related data for meals served at individual hospitals.